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View Diary: Rep. Jan Schakowsky releases deficit reduction plan (194 comments)

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  •  A tax on polluters. You got a problem with that? (1+ / 0-)
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    It is a very, very straight forward tax on polluters. What's wrong with that?

    •  here is the problem (1+ / 0-)
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      unless they are taking this into consideration in the number above, and I have my doubts they are...

      For Tax and Trade to be viable at all, you'd need:

      1. Enough spending or other things to promote job growth to counter jobs lost due to cap and trade...and let's be honest, it will cost jobs
      1. You really need to target many of those programs to areas which would be the most harshly effected.

      That spending would likely counter any actual tax revenue gotten from tax and trade I would think

      •  Worst of all, it will promote job transer to (0+ / 0-)

        other countries that are unencumbered by such things.  Hard for me to grok the argument that we need to give employers even more reason to shift jobs overseas -- especially when you consider that those jobs are likely to go places where they will have a worse environmental impact than staying in the US.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Tue Nov 16, 2010 at 12:10:30 PM PST

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      •  the response (0+ / 0-)

        Enough spending or other things to promote job growth to counter jobs lost due to cap and trade...and let's be honest, it will cost jobs

        yea- that's the right wing talking point, so lets be REAL honest. Got any actual evidence that cap and trade will cost jobs?

        •  Oh -- wow! Lets just ignore the last twenty years (0+ / 0-)

          or so. That way, we can pretend increased costs don't lead employers to shut down plants and buy product from overseas suppliers.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Tue Nov 16, 2010 at 12:13:52 PM PST

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          •  Jobs already are going to china w/o c&t (0+ / 0-)

            any actual evidence that c&t would increase that?

          •  Energy Can't be Outsourced (0+ / 0-)

            ...the power lines won't make it to China.  Manufacturing I can see your point, but C&T focuses primarily on energy, which has to be produced domestically.

            •  Sure it can. China is already buying up (0+ / 0-)

              West Texas oil leases.
              They have previously purchased at least one Canadian oil company.

              Don't know if they're buying any American coal, but I seem to recall that they have become a net coal importer in recent years.

              The more relevant point is this one:

              It's disingenuous to claim that C&T is not a tax on the entire economy. The economy is what drives CO2 emissions because the economy uses all of that energy.

              I'd prefer a simple and straightforward tax over making a new group of traders rich, and serious investment in chopping the cost and availability of alternative energy -- with a very special and explicit emphasis on jobs, especially for those whose jobs are highly dependent on dirty energy.

              LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

              by dinotrac on Tue Nov 16, 2010 at 01:01:55 PM PST

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              •  That's like saying... (0+ / 0-)

                ...China's purchase of concrete is equivelant to outsourcing highway production.  You're argument is unrelated.

                The C&T IS a tax on the entire economy... which would produce revenues that benefit society.  It's kinda the purpose of government (and civilization for that matter).

                •  I may have misunderstood your point. (0+ / 0-)

                  In which case we have to reverse direction, and use oil as the counter-example because we import something like 2/3 to 3/4 of our oil.

                  Don't know what percentage of uranium for nuclear plants comes from overseas, but do know that the US produces only about 4% of the world's uranium.

                  And -- You actually can outsource electricity.  California does it now (so does the town I live in). To my knowledge, that stuff is all state to state, but there's no technical reason why electricity can't be produced in Canada or Mexico and supplied to at least a portion of the US.  Hydroelectric production at Niagara Falls comes close to doing that now.

                  And yes, C&T is a tax on the entire economy, but it's a damned crappy kind of tax designed to make a few people rich, most people poorer, and the government needlessly intrusive.

                  Just pass a damned tax on the fuels. There is no need for something as convoluted as C&T.  Better still - push for cheaper alternative energy instead of going at back-asswards.

                  LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                  by dinotrac on Tue Nov 16, 2010 at 02:42:39 PM PST

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              •  If China is producing oil in West TX (0+ / 0-)

                They would have to play by the same C&T rules too. What's the problem?

          •  We had cap & trade on sulfur emissions (0+ / 0-)

            Did that cost any jobs?

        •  basic economics (0+ / 0-)

          Increased cost on companies = needing to cut costs elsewhere, shedding workers is an obvious place to start. This is one of the basic arguments used by some for going single payer in health care - it gets that costs off of employers, allowing them to hire more workers.  You can't invoke that set of economic principles on one issue and then toss them away on the next (unless you don't support single payer, in which case, I apologize)

          If cap and trade means using fewer fossil fuels - and it will - then people working in those industries will lose their jobs.  It's not rocket science, really. I think it should be Congress' responsibility to try to ensure that people who lose jobs as a direct impact of their policies should be aided in finding new jobs.

          Now, some of those jobs might be recouped by investment into alternative energy, but if that's boosted by federal spending, you have to take that out of the money gained via tax and trade, meaning that the "savings" it gives you is reduced by that much.

          Will some of the tax get eaten - yes, again, economics would say that some of the new costs would get eaten via just reduced profits.  But do you really think they won't pass a good portion, if not a majority, of the costs on, either by cutting costs or higher energy costs?  These aren't right wing talking points, these are real effects in a market system.  Just pretending they don't exist isn't going to help matters.

          •  "basic eccomincs" is not evidence (0+ / 0-)

            and your long-winded attempt at explanation ignores the fact that basically the govt subsidises oil companies by allowing them to ignore the true cost of their product in terms of pollution

            •  I didn't say nothing should be done (0+ / 0-)

              I was saying that ignoring the obvious effects of the legislation or rejecting it as mere "right wing talking points" doesn't do anyone a favor.

              Even the CBO says that certain sectors will experience significant job losses, though they think there will be jobs gained in clean energy sectors - and that's probably right.  However, the question is whether congress will let areas that would be devastated by cap-and-trade, such as the heavy coal mining VA-09 that I live in, hang out to dry.

          •  Increased tax could also mean less profits (0+ / 0-)

            Last time I checked, the oil companies are not exactly starved for profits. A few extra points of taxes on their enormous profits is not going bring down civilization.

            As to investment into alternative energy - what makes you think the private sector will not finance it? If cap & trade is in place, they will have a financial incentive to move to alternative energy. No government subsidies needed.

    •  Hmmm. You must not be able to read. (0+ / 0-)

      First, you characterize cap and trade as a straightforward tax on polluters when it is nothing of the sort.

      Second, you ask me if I have a problem with a tax on polluters when I wrote:

      At least have the guts to propose a straightforward tax.

      I worked as a volunteer on the Ross Perot campaign in 1992, when we were proposing a 50 cent per gallon gasoline tax ridiculed by none other than one Albert Gore.

      LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

      by dinotrac on Tue Nov 16, 2010 at 12:08:23 PM PST

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